Thursday, January 29, 2009


Apparently more people would prefer tacos every Thursday over not being beaten up by Batman

Only Batman can conserve time and effort by bitchslapping two people at once. And fight crime.

Edit: I was entering the labels after the fact here and thought of an awesome new band name: Bitchslap Taco. And this is why I love comics. And tacos.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Duck Season

I always check out Chris Haley's blog,, but I tend to forget to check his comic strips cause I have a goldfish memory span. Which sucks, cause they are always pretty damn funny. But this. This made me lol.So now you have to go check it out too.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

To That Dude I Hate: God, I Hate You So Much

So he comes in again. Picks up some books from his subscription, grabs a few more from the shelf.
Comes to me to cash out. I ring it all up, give him his discount and subtotal. Oh he doesn't have enough.

Has me void a book out. Kind of a pain, cause the system doesn't take into account discount & tax on a void, so I gotta work the math but whatever.
.....still not enough, need to take another one out. Bah. Couldn't.....couldn't just add it up ahead of time, could you?
He took like the only good books out, but whatever. Hands me some cash. And then he DUMPS A CRAPLOAD OF PENNIES IN FRONT OF ME AND TELLS ME TO TAKE WHATEVER I NEED


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

It's not that hard, Marvel, really

So I'm going over the invoice for tomorrow's shipment of new comics. And I see that we are being given an amount of free overship copies of Dr. Doom & The Masters of Evil that is equal to our initial order. What this means is that we don't pay for them unless we can't sell them, if we can't then we just send this back. It seems fairly random as to what is chosen for this type of program sometimes. couldn't have done that to the Obama issue of Spider-Man? Really?

I mean, Dr. Doom & The Masters is
A) Going to be better that Amazing Spider-Man hands down
B) Something I'm gonna push hard in the store

But....realistically.....WHAT THE HELL DAMN GUY?!?!?

Pictures that make me happy



Curse you Abnett & Lanning, I didn't want to like the Authority again

Grundy vs Bizarro: FIGHT

The only way this could be more awesome is if it turns out to be a battle of wits. And then I will love you forever, Scott Kolins.


I....never ever thought they would have collected that


Written by Geoff Johns, Joe Casey, Mark Schultz and Joe Kelly
Art by Pascual Ferry, Duncan Rouleau and others Cover by Carlos Pacheco & Jesus Merino
When the villainous Manchester Black uncovers Clark Kent’s secret identity, it sets in motion one of the hardest days in Superman’s life. Collects stories from SUPERMAN #185-186, ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN #608-609, SUPERMAN: THE MAN OF STEEL #130-131 and ACTION COMICS #795-796. Advance-solicited; on sale May 20 • 192 pg, FC, $14.99 US

I actually liked this story a lot when it came out. I need to reread it again cause it's been so long. I guess since it's Johns they decided to print it? Maybe?

DC marketing, you confuse me.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


So, lots and lots of people are complaining about the fate of Batman in the past issue of Final Crisis. For those who will not read it and haven't heard about it, Batman pretty overcomes the worst possible mental torture (in another book but chronologically before this). He then proceeds to find Darkseid, THE GOD OF EVIL WHOSE VERY PRESENCE CORRUPTS REALITY, basically tells him off, and uses a gun with a poison god bullet to save the world and countless lives.

My stance? Fantastic. I am not a fan of everything Grant Morrison writes. But I am a fan of his past few years of DC work, because they show a passion and respect for the work before him, especially Jack Kirby's. And if you respect the Kirby, then my respect for you increases ten fold.

I take note that a lot of people who complain about Final Crisis #6 are the same people who 1) usually don't enjoy DC from the past couple years, 2) like to bring up the darker and grimmer style that is present in DC titles, and 3) really really don't like gun bit, and 4) find it all boring.

First off, this comment from reader The League on the Occasional Superheroine site sums up a lot of what I feel and in a much more concise way than I could muster:

"What I don't get, in this particular case, is why anyone is biting on the cliff-hanger ending to an issue of a comic where we don't know what will happen by the conclusion of issue 7. Let alone calling the scene you're talking about "disgusting".

I find treating any single issue as if its the FINAL issue of DC Comics, Batman comics, etc... when you're past the age of 22 or so, kind of mind-boggling. Batman died in the last volume of JLA at least twice, with at least one of those deaths penned by Grant Morrison (Rock of Ages and the Obsidian Age).

And, frankly, I really don't see how this is any more desperate than killing off Cap.

Death and destruction are sort of what the protagonists of the DCU are there to rail against. Without villains who are death-dealing and destructive, it doesn't make much sense to have heroes who want to stop them. Otherwise, one winds up with books in which characters slug it out for no discernible purpose.

I'm no fan of the grisly imagery that recently appeared in Teen Titans, but I also don't mind villains who can begin to reflect the sorts of atrocities we know are possible and which are A-O.K. in every other medium.

And if we want to look at the history, didn't DC have a storyline 20-odd years ago where they killed an infinite number of universes?

Some may not like the story, and that's fine. But to claim to know someone would only be enjoying Final Crisis because they mindlessly consume whatever DC puts out is more than a tad disingenuous. The exact same suppositions could be made that Marvel readers will mindlessly buy anything, no matter how trite (see: Secret Invasion).

Further, it doesn't begin to describe what's happening in other books, such as JSA, JLA, the Superman titles, etc...

If your problem is truly violence in comics, then I would expect a regular complaint department vis-a-vis Marvel's line of Wolverine and Punisher comics. I'd expect a full complaint regarding the recent Joker book by Azzarello, the inhuman behavior witnessed in The Killing Joke, and a denunciation of Nova pulling apart Annihulus's innards.

There is an entire final chapter to this story, and then a universe of comics coming afterward for an unknown number of years.The idea that Bruce Wayne is "dead" is somewhat ridiculous, but I do find it to be an interesting "

Well said. Also, Darkseid used the Omega Sanction, which as noted by many already online is not an actually death ray. "Back in Seven Soldiers: Mister Miracle, Morrison redefined the classic “Omega Effect” as the Omega Sanction, a sort of dimension where you live an endless number of lives, over and over again, reincarnating every time, never able to rejoin with the Source. Mister Miracle escaped from that, so it’s not impossible that Batman could either."

In my personal view, I generally like my superhero comics a bit lighter with a sense of humor and heroism. On the flip side of that , I really really love it when Jack Bauer kills the hell out of people. Violence has a place. You can overdo it, you can underdo it, you can tell a fantastic story utilizing violence, and you can tell a piece of crap story with violence. The Blob cannibalizing the Wasp? Crap. Nova pulling Annhilus inside out in a giant battle to save the universe? FRIGGIN' AWESOME. Sometimes it's just good storytelling. Sometimes, it's if the violence actually has a reasoning for existing. I find the majority of Mark Millar's violence (Kick Ass) unnecessary and gratuitous. Half the time it makes no sense, like in his current Wolverine run. Parts of that last issue reaaaaally sucked, but they existed so we could see Wolverine butcher the X-Men. Of course, this is comics so maybe I'm being too picky about things making no sense.

I think I have a whole separate post to get into if I want to delve into the darker aspects of the superhero world and each companies hand in this trend.

But, I do want to talk about the gun thing here. Seriously, dudes. I love the fact that Batman can do what he does without relying on guns. Batman doesn't go around killing people, and it makes sense that guns are something he just straight up hates. That being said, BATMAN KNOWS WHEN TO MAN THE FUCK UP. Best case example, this one time Batman has a case involving that douchebag Gunhawk. By the end of it, Batman was too far away to prevent Gunhawk from killing someone. So Batman used a sniper rifle to make an IMPOSSIBLE shot to disarm Gunhawk. And after that, he threw the rifle into the depths of the Batcave. Which, man, that place has got to be full of shit. There's a dead alien down there and who knows what else. But back to point. Batman doesn't kill the Joker every chance he gets because the Joker, for as much a threat as he is, WILL NEVER ENSLAVE THE WORLD INTO A HELLISH NIGHTMARE STATE OF DOOM.*

And then finally. Boring? awritjiaeogueasgusejgkseg

*EDIT: Right, ok, except for that one time in Emperor Joker. It was a a slightly happier type of hellish nightmare state of doom though. Except for Batman. It just straight up sucked for him.

Friday, January 16, 2009

To be fair to Marvel

From Diamond Comics:

"In case you’ve been in a coma or hiding in a cave, this week’s long-anticipated release of Amazing Spider-Man #583 captivated consumers – selling through all versions of its first printing in record time "

I wonder....I wonder if this is because NOBODY HAD ANY. Bah. General feeling from other stores that I picked up on was that hey, economy sucks, we don't remember there being a back up story just a cover, so really we are sorry but c'mon. And I have to say we were in the same boat.

In the interest of fairness, this was the actual Diamond Daily notification:

"Retailers that exceed their orders for Amazing Spider-Man #575 that were placed by its FOC of October 9 with their orders for the regular Amazing Spider-Man #583 by its FOC of December 18 will qualify to order as many of the Obama Variant as they wish while supplies last.........Plus, if this main story weren’t enough of a draw, #583 will also feature a backup that sees Spider-Man meet President-Elect Obama. "

Diamond did give us a heads up. They did inform us of the back up story. It was only mentioned on the online update, so if you don't check that then it was easy to miss. I try my best, but dude. I manage a friggin' store. I got enough stuff to do. Did I screw up personally? Yeah. Sorry. But really, DC has a rep who calls me to let me know of important things. Dark Horse has a rep that does the same. It sure would be nice to have a little help from Marvel, considering retailer confidence is fairly low.

Both major companies have their problems when it comes to promotion and marketing. On the flip side of that if other comic book store managers are anything like me in their everyday experience then they are exausted, frustrated, and usually a little on edge. It's not ideal, but I believe that's what most managers are like for any type of retail. So this means that even if the retailer gets the word out, there is still room for human error. So what does this result in? For the publishers and retailers, a whole lot of missed opportunities. For the consumers? A lot of missed comics. And that just straight up sucks for everybody.

As a retailer, I have to say that the best company in the market right now that actually really tries to help retailers out would be Dark Horse. I have an assload of reasons, but here's a bunch in a nice easy list format:
-Weekly calls from a representative
-Accessible retailer website and weekly newsletters
-Pretty much all their HCs & TPBs are packed with protective slips between each volume to protect against scuffing damages, a very common problem that happens when items are shipped from Diamond.
-Say what you will about licenced properties, Star Wars, Aliens, Indian Jones, Buffy: they bring the customers in.
-Seriously, Buffy? Thank you. Perhaps the greatest new individual title to bring in new readers and new customers that continue to come back. I just signed up another new subscription customer last night just because of Buffy.
-And y'know, they publish the Goon.

And of the main two? Marvel or DC?
All I can say is that in the past year or two, Marvel has contributed the following to my downward spiral towards retail insanity:
-Death of Captain America
-Avengers Elektra/Skrull hype
-Dark Reign solicitations (or absence of any actual useful info)
-Brand New Day and the huuuuge sales drop off
-The endless amount of Wolverine one-shots
-To be fair, items that shipped late are returnable. But I sell out of Millar Wolverine, so it's moot. Spider-Man is always on time, damn them.....I mean, gratz! >_>

DC causes of insanity:
-Loss of sales from Countdown (note:certain copies were returnable)
-Loss of sales from Trinity (note: ditto)
-Good job having your core titles (Action, Batman) running late. BUT....we still sold fairly well
-Good job with the All-Stars always being late. BUT.....we sold virtually all of them regardless.
-RIP & Final Crisis, not really easy to get into. But......we still sell a crapload of them. And hey, last issue of Final Crisis was returnable because it was late......
-....I am actually trying to think of some, I am not just biased.

Bottom line. Retail stores need money to survive. Sucks but true. And if I had to weigh the the two out, Marvel has been the most detrimental. Now, you really do have to take regional differences into account though. I sell more Buffy and Green Lantern than I do X-Men. Anything Garth Ennis touches is always stronger than any 2nd tier DC title, and often times stronger than a core title. And I saw the report that basically every month Wonder Woman bleeds readers, but I order a steady quantity every month. And we are by no means a huge store. We don't have more than one location. But we have good traffic and a strong subscription customer base.

So yeah. That pretty much ends that rant. Marvel gave a heads up, and they don't deserve the level of finger pointing they are getting for this particular internet bitch fest. Well, they kinda do, but for other reasons. You get what I mean.

Huh, I ran the spell check and not a single mistake. Something....something is wrong.

Edit: As of this point, about 25 pre-orders on the 2nd print of Obama/Spidey. And I have explained the entire publishing scenario far too many times today.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Again with the Obama

I've taken about a dozen or so phone calls myself about Obama/Spidey this past week, but employee Jon said he had about 20-30 the past 2 days.

I can't really sum it up any better than Mike Sterling did here

I will add that I took a phone call today from a woman asking about the variant cover. I told her we didn't qualify for it and started to explain the difference between the variant and the normal cover because hey, a lot of people don't know when they ask. She told me she knew, so cool I get to skip that whole part of the usual conversation. She then asked in an accusatory tone "So you guys been holding them for people ahead of time?"

Well.....that's what subscriptions are for. I mean, we are holding onto them in advance. But. Ah screw it >_<

And now I'll bet you we are the 'shifty' store.

I was actually thinking there would have been more requests because hey, Seattle. I'm glad though that I don't have to explain to tons of people why we won't have enough of the 1st printing.

Edit: Heh, Obamageddon

Sunday, January 11, 2009

That hair. That mustache. That shirt.

I can come to only one conclusion: obviously, I have been doing everything wrong.

Votes are in for anarchy

So it looks like the next evil plot will have me creating a mighty tank made entirely of coconuts and fitted with a freeze ray. With said coconut tank of doom I will steal all the stop signs in the world on my way to a building that I choose by zooming onto a random spot on googlemaps and then I shall launch that unfortunate building into outer space. I really hope it ends up being Tom Cruise's house.

For this task, I shall require an entire bottle of Jameson. Nothing more, nothing less.


Friday, January 9, 2009

Jim, if you would please?

So, one of my favorite comics is the Thor Ragnarok story by Michael Avon Oeming & Andrea Divito. It's the perfect blend of the Kirby/Simonson history and the actual Norse mythology of the final days of Asgard. The story is epic practically on every page, and Divito's art is so friggin' epic it's beyond words at times. Unless the words are "OH SNAP". So I see in the order forms a new over sized HC will be available soon. Sweet! That can only be awesome on top of awesome! That's
They merged it with the other Disassembled bullcrap?

"Collecting Thor issues #80 to 85, Iron Man #84 to 89, Captain America & The Falcon #5 to 7 and Captain America #29 to 32, written by Mike Avon Oeming, Mark Ricketts, John Jackson Miller, Robert Kirkman and Priest, pencilled By Andrea Divito, Tony Harris, Scott Kolins, Jorge Lucas, Scot Eaton and Joe Bennett features a cover by Steve Epting."


Ok, just a quick remembrance of all those other stories:
-The Iron Man was a waste of time
-The Captain America was Kirkman, which should make it better, but it was very forgettable.
-The Captain America & Falcon was, well, Captain America & Falcon. It wasn't bad, and I love Priest's writing, but I don't think there was a need to really, y'know, ever see this again.

And they want $50



I shit you not, I could sell 20 copies easy right off the bat. A $50 book full of crap? Not so much.

Random things that would make me scream like a little girl

Imagine waking up to one of those on your wall? That's a Lovecraftian wake up call of doom right there.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Random quote with absolutely no context

"Bryan Adams is a bear that moos."


Plus this
Equals this
It almost makes sense if you were there.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Read this book or suffer my wrath

Last week we received a press packet from a new publisher that included a copy of their first major publication, the Charlatan: Preludes GN. The packet included a publishers note stating that the long term goal of this new venture was to create solid and fun sci-fi/superhero stories that could appeal to all ages of readers. Essentially, a PG-13 book that doesn't dumb things down but doesn't feature buckets of blood and gore. I love you Fear Agent, but damn, I ain't passing you along to a 10 year old. So to sum it up in a horribly simplistic way, Charlatan is to the sci-fi/superero genre as Bone is to the fantasy genre: a completely accessible, well done, and thoroughly enjoyable book that you can pass on to pretty much everyone.

I can appreciate this for a number of reasons. First off, someone has been needing to do this for a long long time. DC & Marvel have their all ages titles, but they don't really make it a point to push it on the larger markets. And even then, they follow a very episodic formula that almost reduces them in appeal (at least to older audiences I believe). Don't get me wrong, I still pretty much stand by what I always say and that this stuff is much better than like 90% of main stream titles. Tiny Titans and Marvel Adventures: Avengers are some of the best things being published today. But actually grabbing hold of new readers is tricky, and unfortunately from the trends I see at our store not too many teen boys are going to come in running for Tiny Titans. And not too many girls either because they just don't know it's out there.

But then you have something like Bone which fills a needed niche so perfectly. Accessible to readers regardless of age? Check. A solid fantasy epic? Check. Great story and art? Check. Stupid stupid rat creatures? Check. One of the best of the few actual fantasy titles available on the direct market? Check. And Bone is one of the most successful all ages titles available today.
So, it's about time someone tried to attempt something similar for the sci-fi/superhero set again.
Charlatan attempts to tackle this gap in the market by offering a new interesting story with a great singular purpose behind the entire publishing venture: lets have some fun and try to do a few new things with superheroes. And that's exactly what this first volume offers. Charlatan focuses on the story of Lucy Halford, who is the first human to ever be chosen as the defender of the universe. The problem is, she is 4 years old. Lucy's father steps up, refusing to surrender his daughter to the aliens who will train her for a life of hardship and an inevitable violent death. And as they are confronted with new and horrible threats, Lucy's father and mother have to ask themselves if they are willing to sacrifice the one thing in the universe that means the most of them in order to save the universe. Remember when Marvel comics consistently used to have a moral and ethical center to the conflicts?

Lawson's scripting is tight and he doesn't waste time nor does he throw too much at you all at once. He has a clear idea where he is going and builds a fun ride by introducing a number of sub-plots that will slowly pay off. Gouveia's art is clean and the man knows how to lay out a page. Something so many people out there don't know how to do (I'M LOOKING AT YOU, BENITIZ). He's not particularly flashy, but I don't think that's something I would have wanted to see. He does not detract from the story, he enhances it. I look forward to seeing him develop more and maybe refine his style, but as a draftsman I believe he's great. At no point did I have trouble trying to figure out what was going on (YOU'RE ON THE LIST BACHALO!).

So yeah. I want to support the hell out of this and I wish the best of luck to Jen & Gil Lawson, the husband and wife team opperating Generaljinjur. They have a a definite purpose to their publishing, and it's one I can get behind.

Now, see if you can find a way to fit in an ape and we are golden.

Cause of Death: Shot by Jack Bauer

I think we need a drinking game where you take a shot every time someone close to Jack Bauer dies. Double shots if he guns them down himself.
Pretty sure you probably end up with alcohol poisoning just by watching the first few episodes of season 5.

Awesome stuff the store picked up

And I can afford maybe 2 of them. CURSES.